Wednesday, June 30, 2004

Eschew Shoes

I’ve been incurring all sorts of injuries as a result of my footwear of late (perhaps due not so much to the wearing of it as to the requirement to move about and navigate the world in it… fine line, perhaps, but the problem certainly can’t be with me). Admittedly I’m a rather clumsy person, and have a constant set bruises to prove it, but it seems my feet have been getting more than their fair share of abuse recently. Listed below are shoes to avoid and why:

Boots: This particular type of footwear is, at first glance, a sort of ‘wear at your own risk’ type due to the addition to one’s height acquired when worn properly. However, through much use I have become quite fond of boots, particularly those of the Nine West persuasion (aided by the Nine West price tag). Wearing them affords me not only a slick-looking pair of feet and a better view of the world from 4 inches higher than where I normally see it, but I also get that whole “I’m really a grown-up now” feeling (yes, it disappears when I take them off…or have to actually speak to someone). So I wore them on a recent apartment-viewing trek. After a couple hours of walking from Wrigley Field to the lake and back and a bunch of places in between, I had developed blisters and something of a limp that kind of took away from the grown-up-ish feeling, as well as my enjoyment of being 4 inches taller (it kind of wears off after the first 20 minutes anyway). And I really didn’t give a shit if my feet looked slick anymore, simply because of what I knew I’d see once I took my socks off. Ix-nay on boots.

Tennis shoes: Frequently resorted to as a more comfortable sort of shoe, tennis shoes are deceptively soft and giving, luring you into thinking they’ll provide ample cushioning for your feet during everyday activities while protecting them from injury and small dogs. Socks are co-conspirators in supporting this widely-held belief. Yet they fail miserably when one attempts to run for any length of time (to escape a pack of small dogs, for example), and in addition to their failure to prevent shin splints, they also inflict blisters and black toenails. Ix-nay on tennis shoes.

Platform shoes: Ok, ok, I know I was asking for it when I wore these for any length of time, not to mention out in public (really not a cool shoe to own anymore, injuries aside), but this is a record even for me. While I normally come close to falling down a set of stairs about once a week, my record of actually falling down stairs is much shorter than one might think given this proclivity. What’s more, the actual falling down the stairs is generally achieved by falling backwards, and you can’t really get seriously hurt by just falling on your ass (maybe it’s some kind of weird gift, like with cats). But yesterday I had my oh-shit-I-almost-fell-down-the-stairs moment and failed to learn from it, because on my next trip down, I fell. Forward. (I should add that I was going down the stairs, not up.) The bottom of my shoe caught on the step (yes it’s possible) and down I went. Thank goodness there was a handrail to catch, or a good deal of expensive dental work would have to be redone. Regardless, I sustained several hideous bruises, lost part of my pedicure, and got myself a really bloody scrape. And after a walk down Michigan Avenue today, my left foot refuses to provide any kind of support at all without retaliating in a manner rather more painful than one might expect.

But there’s more. I bandaged myself up and dragged myself to my car to drive home, and stopped for gas on the way. For some reason, my knowledge of how to keep my balance when opening a car door escaped me, and I fell backwards (yeah, good timing) to the ground and hit my head on a post. It’s been awhile since I hit my head, and it hurt, and I felt somewhat put out that I was 22 and not allowed to scream until someone brought ice… and ice cream, for that matter. Aren’t other people supposed to drop whatever it is they’re doing and come over and stand around looking concerned? Maybe they would have if I’d stayed on the ground, but I was wearing a skirt, and that simply wasn’t an option.

These have contributed substantially to the suckage factor in my life--I’d burn those fucking shoes if it weren’t for the fact that chemicals in whatever they’re made of would probably kill me outright.

Flip flops: Traditionally my favorite kind of footwear, I wear flip flops whenever I can. What with the blisters and everything, I like them even more than I usually do these days. Then I stepped in gum.

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